Clean Hands Count: A Story of Success

On any given day, about one in 25 hospital patients has at least one healthcare-associated infection. One simple yet effective way to prevent these types of infections is by practicing hand hygiene—which is particularly important for healthcare workers who, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), on average clean their hands less than half the times they should. 

To help address this issue, the CDC Foundation and CDC's Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion, with support from GOJO, launched a hand hygiene campaign in 2016 called Clean Hands Count. The purpose of this campaign was to create a comprehensive initiative that would reach a broad group of healthcare providers, patients and caregivers. This involved redesigning CDC’s hand hygiene website to organize and display hand hygiene information and house the new campaign materials, including brochures, fact sheets, infographics, posters and a promotional video for healthcare providers. 

Through this campaign, CDC aims to:

  • Improve healthcare provider adherence to CDC hand hygiene recommendations.
  • Address the myths and misperceptions about hand hygiene.
  • Empower patients to play a role in their care by asking or reminding healthcare providers to clean their hands.

The campaign materials were promoted and were made available during World Hand Hygiene Day in May of 2016 and 2017. 

Clean Hands CountAs a result of these efforts, the Clean Hands Count campaign was awarded a Digital Health Communications Award for Excellence for Outstanding Digital Health Media in the Medical Media category earlier this year. These awards recognize leading providers of the world's best digital health resources. 

We are grateful to GOJO for their partnership that made this campaign possible, and we are proud of the success of this campaign. Learn more about this campaign and download brochures, fact sheets and infographics at www.cdc.gov/handhygiene.


Sekou Sidibe, MPH, is a senior program officer for the CDC Foundation.